Nostalgia Man

Happy New Year Time Wasters!

Ever see someone play a ridiculously challenging game and then ask them, "Why so you put yourself through so much punishment?" I’ve done this quite a few times. For example I have a friend who is a diehard Ninja Gaiden fan, plays them all and loves the challenge.

Well, I have my own little cup of torture as well, Mega Man. I love playing the old school Mega Man games no matter how hard they might be. Some I’ve played to the point that I can run through them with almost no challenge (Mega Man and Mega Man 3 specifically) so of course I was excited when Capcom started up the original Mega Man series again, but now we are at a break between games and there isn’t any news on a Mega Man 11. This is where Rokko Chan comes in.

Rokko Chan is, in the simplest terms, a Mega Man clone. Imagine that Roll became the super fighting robot instead of Rock and that’s about the basis for this game (okay it’s a little different but you get my point). Rokko Chan sees the destruction all around her from Dr. Mad’s evil robots and of course like any good little robot girl with a gun for an arm, she runs out to stop him.

Rokko Chan plays about the same as our original Blue Bomber, but with a few small changes. One of these is that she is much spryer and can jump to heights that Mega Man could only ever reach while underwater. At first I was afraid this would make a Mega Man game too easy because they require pixel precession jumping abilities, but Rokko Chan doesn’t disappoint in that all the jumping-styled puzzles have been appropriately adjusted for perfect gratifying frustration.

Another small note is that Rokko Chan has a particularly useless dash ability. Unlike our other blue friend, she doesn’t actually slide across the ground but instead dashes straight ahead. This killed the ability to slide, epically below a boss when they jumped. So while not a game killer because it still helps fast travel in the game, and can be used to boost jump like Mega Man X could in the X series, it was a minor disappointment.

Having mentioned the bosses, I feel it’s appropriate to point out that every boss in this game looks like they came straight from the mind Keiji Inafune himself. Not only do the bosses look the part, but they will take a classic gamer to school in no time and remind him/her of their 2D past.

Level design is of course the most important aspect of any Mega Man or Mega Man clone and I’ve got to give it up to Rokko Chan. Not only does the game retain the same feel as the classic series, but it also brings about new gameplay mechanics and enemies that are focused for each of the specific environments.

Finally we are down to that last important detail, the music. Any Mega Man fan can attest to just how great 8-bit audio can be and yet again Rokko Chan delivers. All of the music is new and refreshing while still retaining the classic Mega Man vibe.

So at the end of the day Rokko Chan is such a good clone that you could replace the sprite for Rokko Chan with Mega Man and think you’re playing an early release of Mega Man 11! The only bad thing is that this a game meant for a very specific audience. First you have to love retro gaming, then you have to love torturous gameplay, and finally you must be a Mega Man fan.

So while not for everybody, I still advise anyone who fits into this audience to check it out and I guarantee you won’t be disappointed or your money back! (It’s free)

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